Reviewer's Rating 2 out of 5   User Rating 3 out of 5
A Guy Thing (2003)
12

In films like "Chasing Amy" and "Almost Famous", former professional skateboarder Jason Lee has been the sidekick rather than the star. Always the best man, figuratively speaking, and never the groom. "A Guy Thing", however, sees him play the lead for the first time.

He plays the soon-to-be married Paul, who wakes up the morning after his bachelor party to find blonde stranger Becky (Julia Stiles) in his bed. Paul has no memory of how she got there or what they did between the sheets. Oh, and his fiancée, Selma Blair's uptight Karen, is on her way over...

Paul is another of those buttoned-down, deeply conventional males - beloved of screwball comedies like "Bringing Up Baby" - who is on the verge of a safe but deathly-dull marriage when he encounters a free-spirited female (Stiles' Becky).

He also has much in common with Ben Stiller's hapless, humiliated stooge in "Meet the Parents" (also written by "A Guy Thing's" screenwriter Greg Glienna).

Like his predecessors, Paul is put through a series of farcical indignities, including being shot at by his future father-in-law while attempting to hide up a tree. But thanks to Chris Koch's slack direction, "A Guy Thing" never gathers real comic momentum.

Some scenes, such as the one in which a pharmacy clerk embarrassingly broadcasts Paul's request for "crab medicine" to the entire store, drag on well after we've got the joke. Others, meanwhile - including the entire sub-plot involving Becky's belligerently jealous ex-boyfriend - simply aren't funny to begin with.

Lee, Stiles, and Blair remain likeable leads, and there some enjoyable performances among the supporting cast - notably Larry Miller's outraged minister and Jay Brazeau's tubby yet nimble dancing instructor.

In the end, however, if you're looking for a romantic comedy, you'd be better off jilting "A Guy Thing".

End Credits

Director: Chris Koch

Writer: Greg Glienna, Pete Schwaba, Matt Tarses, Bill Wrubel

Stars: Jason Lee, Julia Stiles, Selma Blair, James Brolin, Shawn Hatosy, Lochlyn Munro

Genre: Comedy, Romance

Length: 102 minutes

Cinema: 13 June 2003

Country: USA

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